Rock the 80s

80s Party Entertainment

Pretty much everything from the 80s seems entertaining now…from a distance. And there are some seriously fun ways to entertain your guests (and yourself) at your next 80s party. Aside from admiring everyone’s fashion choices, throw in as many opportunities as you can for guests to sing cheesy 80s songs, perform silly 80s dance moves, and rediscover all the embarrassing and dorky things people did in the 80s (so, so many embarrassing things).

1. Lip-synching Contest


Free your guests from actually having to sing, so they can focus on their awesome 80s dance moves. Encourage guests to perform in groups so they can really wow with classics such as “Thriller,” “Let’s Get Physical,” and “Whip It.” Offer multiple prizes like “Best Synchronized Moves” or “Most Athletic Performance.”

2. Photobooth

80s party photobooth sign graphics

Since guests probably spent weeks planning their awesome 80s look, give them a chance to show it off. You can create a simple DIY backdrop using a plain drop cloth or muslin and splattering it with neon paint. Or cut large geometric shapes out of brightly colored paper and hang against a plain wall or curtains. Fun props include plastic sunglasses, plastic jewelry, and plastic rock guitars. For a tubular touch, print out our free Photobooth Signs with fun 80s phrases.

3. Hire Break-dancers


This has a real “wow” factor if you can afford it. “Look they’re spinning on their heads!” If you can’t afford professionals, even the kids from down the block will be fun to watch if they’re appropriately dressed in Adidas tracksuits and big gold chains. If you can, take it to the next level with a light up dance floor and overhead strobe lights.

4. Name that 80s Theme Song

Unlike today, theme songs back then actually had words. That you could remember. Hand out pen and paper, play snippets from classic 80s TV show themes, and ask guests to identity the show. Award the winner a CD (or better, a cassette tape) with Classic 80s Theme Songs. I’ll bet you’re singing the theme from the Love Boat right now (come aboard, we’re expecting you…). For a refresher on all the other classics, check out this “Best Of” video.

5. Rubik’s Cube Contest


Ask for volunteers or have each table nominate one “Cube Master” to participate. Chances are nobody at your party will be able to do more than one side so put on a great song (“It’s Tricky” by RUN-DMC) and give a prize to everyone who completes one side by the end of the song.

6. Show Vintage Music Video Clips

Use a projector to screen cheesy music videos, from the days when MTV still had music. You can enjoy them silently as a visual treat, or play them loud and proud. To help jog your memory, or if you just need a good laugh, check out this compilation of “Top 10 Ridiculous 1980s Music Videos”. Who knew there actually was a “Safety Dance?”

7. 80s Trivia Contest


Put guests into groups (or by table) and hand out 80s trivia questions to each group. Set a timer or allow guests to answer by the end of the party (more cocktails = more entertaining answers). Award prizes for most correct and most creative. Hand out DVDs of 80s TV shows, movies, or video games as prizes. A good collection of trivia questions can be found at Extra style points if you include the photo questions (e.g. Which one is Hall and which one is Oats. Seems so simple and yet…).